LDA Today – July-August 2016

In this issue...

  • President's Message: A Special Announcement for Parents
  • Disability and Criminal Justice Reform
  • Are You Prepared for a Natural Disaster?
  • Nominating Committee Requests Recommendations for 2017-18 Officers and Board of Directors
  • Full Steam Ahead on ESSA Implementation
  • School Board Elections on the Horizon

President’s Message

The 2017 LDA Conference in Baltimore, February 16-19 is going to feature a special event Saturday, February 18. In addition to other outstanding speakers and sessions on that day, there will be a well-chosen selection of sessions that will make up a focus strand for parents. These sessions are designed to give support to parents who are trying to gain a better understanding of their child’s learning disabilities and at the same time are struggling to figure out how to get the best possible special education services and the best education in the general education classroom for their children. Information… Read More »

Disability and Criminal Justice Reform

More than 750,000 adults behind bars report having a disability, with two-thirds experiencing a cognitive disability. A recent white paper by the non-profit group RespectAbility advocates criminal justice reform that specifically addresses the needs of people with disabilities. Stories within the report give human faces to the numbers; people featured include those with learning disabilities. The group calls for reforms that will provide pathways to success: Early interventions to keep youth with disabilities from entering the school-to-prison pipeline; Adequate accommodations throughout the criminal justice system; and A re-entry process that understands the unique challenges facing citizens returning to the community… Read More »

Are You Prepared for a Natural Disaster?

As devastating rains, floods, fires, hurricanes, and tornadoes hit various areas across our nation, hundreds and sometimes thousands of people are displaced. Many are without families to help in their recovery and others are without resources to start over again. The American Red Cross suggests taking the three key steps to emergency preparedness: make a plan, have a kit and be informed. Having a fireproof and waterproof storage container for legal documents such as deeds; leases; wills; insurance policies; birth certificates; marriage certificates; copies of driver’s licenses and other ID cards for health benefits, social security, and credit cards; and… Read More »

Nominating Committee Requests Recommendations for 2017-18 Officers and Board of Directors

The work to develop a slate of officers and board of directors for presentation at the LDA 2017 Assembly of Delegates in Baltimore is underway. The nominating committee is searching for candidates with leadership and teambuilding skills as prospective leaders for our organization. A commitment to work for the goals of LDA is a requirement for those who will fill these positions. Nomination forms were distributed in May and are available either through your state affiliate or the national office (info@ldaamerica.org). Your help is needed to find worthy candidates and to submit completed applications to the nominating committee. The Board… Read More »

Full Steam Ahead on ESSA Implementation

by: Myrna Mandlawitz, LDA Policy Director With members of Congress out of Washington until after Labor Day, the legislative side of government has quieted somewhat. The slack has been taken up by the administrative branch, specifically the Department of Education, which is moving full steam ahead to get regulations written and approved for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The first group of proposed regulations were issued around Memorial Day, with public comments due to the Department on August 1. Proposed regulations focused on ESSA accountability, data, and consolidated state plan provisions. The Department posed five key questions, but also solicited… Read More »

School Board Elections on the Horizon

by: Shirley Hilts-Adams Most states with elected school board members will be conducting their elections in November as part of the General Election process. New board members will be seated in January and take on a special responsibility for the education of the children in the district in which they live. Members of LDA are usually well versed in education law and aware of the rules and regulations that govern the provision of special education services. As such, they are a bit ahead of many individuals who come to school governing boards without a great deal of knowledge about the… Read More »

Resource Guide on Students with ADHD and Section 504

The U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, recently sent Students with ADHD and Section 504: A Resource Guide with an accompanying letter to school districts that receive Federal financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education. The guide, available on the Office of Civil Rights website here (PDF download), is in the public domain and can be reproduced in whole or in part. Summaries of the three laws pertaining to the education of students with disabilities are provided: Section 504 of The Rehabilitation Act, The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Amendments Act and, Individuals with Disabilities Education Act… Read More »